Scholarships vs. Rankings

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )

Which would you choose?

School A
7
27%
School B
19
73%
 
Total votes: 26

JoJanel
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Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby JoJanel » Mon Jan 28, 2013 3:41 am

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Last edited by JoJanel on Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

JoJanel
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Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby JoJanel » Mon Jan 28, 2013 3:43 am

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rinkrat19
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby rinkrat19 » Mon Jan 28, 2013 3:47 am

What are the underemployment rates?

What is the firm size breakdown of the employed portion of the students? (Lots of >100 lawyer firms, or lots of solos and 2-10 lawyer firms, etc)?

What are the salary distributions like?

What are the stipulations on the scholarship at B? (How many scholarship students retain their awards after 1L year?)

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Tom Joad
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby Tom Joad » Mon Jan 28, 2013 3:50 am

If you put a gun to my head, I would probably take William Mitchell because $150 grand in debt from UMN would scare the bejesus out of me. But hopefully there isn't a gun to your head so you can retake and do UMN for free next year. Good luck! :D

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rinkrat19
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby rinkrat19 » Mon Jan 28, 2013 3:58 am

If it really is William Mitchell, I wouldn't go there for free. Most of the firm-employed grads are in firms of <10 people. These are (not always, but) frequently groups of desperate unemployed grads banding together and starting new firms with insufficient startup capital and no book of business. Most fail.

I would also not go to Minnesota for sticker/near-sticker price, but at least a much higher percentage of grads are in real firms >50 lawyers.

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PDaddy
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby PDaddy » Mon Jan 28, 2013 6:17 am

Incomplete hypothetical...

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reasonable_man
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Jan 28, 2013 9:22 am

JoJanel wrote:Hypothetical Question -

Applicant has been admitted to School A and School B. Both are in the region in which Applicant would like to practice.

School A is top 20, School B is top...100.

School A will lead to nearly 150K debt, School B is FREE, living expenses covered.

According to the ABA, School A has a 53% employment rate, School B has a 56% employment rate. (JD Required)

Applicant leans towards public interest law and away from corporate, but likes the idea of academia.


Thoughts?


I see where you are going with this --- but you really need more information. For instance, lets use the New York region (only because I practice in NY and so it’s a bit easier for me to work with the range of schools). Assume your choices were Fordham at sticker (Top 30 – but usually thought of in the same class as Top 20 schools) and St. John’s (a TTT no doubt but a school with a good NYC alumni base). My response ignores loan forgiveness programs (I know nothing about Fordham’s loan forgiveness program or if one even exists and admittedly this could be a factor). Everything else being equal, I think you’re better off with zero debt from SJU than a mountain of debt from Fordham to work in the public sector. And if you are a PI gunner from the outset, you can have similar options (like ADA, etc) from SJU. However, if you want to work in private practice, the choice becomes extremely hard to make because while the top group of students will get better offers at Fordham, than the top group at SJU, the lower end of either class is mostly screwed. So it becomes a question of where you plan to finish in the class (and no one plans to finish below top 10%, but each year about 90% of every graduating class does exactly that – even if their parents told them they were special snowflakes their entire life). In sum, every decision of this sort is extremely fact sensitive and the answer is going to be different in many cases depending on how certain individual variables turn. I know everyone on TLS believes that there are adcoms and fellow applicants trying to figure out who they are, but if you want to name the two schools you’re thinking about, that might make this a more productive conversation.

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cahwc12
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby cahwc12 » Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:52 am

This is the most salient example I can think of:

University of Texas 68.1%
St. Mary's University 66.7%

You are considering employment rates equivalently when they aren't. Take a look at the breakdowns of those two seemingly close statistics. Is it better to go to UT at resident sticker vs St. Mary's for free? Based on employment numbers and COA, that answer is a seemingly definitive yes. But look at the percentage of solo and 2-10 attorney jobs there are, and the percentage of biglaw and federal clerkship jobs:

UT-Austin: 34.3% of graduates are employed in Biglaw (100+) or Federal Clerkships. 12% of graduates are employed in firms of 10 or fewer attorneys (including solo).
St. Mary's: 2.0% of graduates are employed in Biglaw (100+) or Federal Clerkships. 52.2% of graduates are employed in firms of 10 or fewer attorneys (including solo).

One very key piece of data that the NALP forms typically don't include when submitted to LST is salary breakdown. You can bet that the employed Texas grads have significantly higher median salary than St. Mary's grads. In fact, if we assume that unreported employed graduates have the lower salaries than any employed graduates (not a big assumption), it's easier to estimate starting salary.

An employed Texas graduate at median should make somewhere around $57,408 in the first year.
An employed Texas graduate in the top third should make somewhere between $57,408 and $82,500 in the first year.
An employed Texas graduate in the top tenth should make at or above $160,000 in the first year.

An employed St. Mary's graduate in the top tenth should make somewhere between $0.00 and unreported (something less than $59,408).

Unlike UT, we can't really even get a good grasp of St. Mary's salary breakdown, because only 8.4% of the class reported salaries. Now ask yourself why: if you had a job and earned an acceptable wage, would you report it back to your school? How about if you couldn't get a job at all and instead took out more loans to open your own fledgling solo practice?

JoJanel
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby JoJanel » Mon Jan 28, 2013 6:17 pm

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Last edited by JoJanel on Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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jenesaislaw
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby jenesaislaw » Mon Jan 28, 2013 6:44 pm

None of those questions mean anything without location.

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rickgrimes69
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby rickgrimes69 » Mon Jan 28, 2013 8:11 pm

jenesaislaw wrote:None of those questions mean anything without location.

PRgradBYU
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby PRgradBYU » Mon Jan 28, 2013 9:15 pm

You're oversimplifying this. It absolutely makes a difference which T-20 and T-100 you're talking about. Give us names of the schools or expect vague responses.

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reasonable_man
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby reasonable_man » Tue Jan 29, 2013 12:09 am

PRgradBYU wrote:You're oversimplifying this. It absolutely makes a difference which T-20 and T-100 you're talking about. Give us names of the schools or expect vague responses.


Exactly. Exactly like I said and the other guy said and now yet another person has said to you op. The question is impossible without knowing which schools, so either name the schools or kill the thread. Its sorta pointless to keep going around in circles.

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Tom Joad
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby Tom Joad » Tue Jan 29, 2013 12:40 am

reasonable_man wrote:
PRgradBYU wrote:You're oversimplifying this. It absolutely makes a difference which T-20 and T-100 you're talking about. Give us names of the schools or expect vague responses.


Exactly. Exactly like I said and the other guy said and now yet another person has said to you op. The question is impossible without knowing which schools, so either name the schools or kill the thread. Its sorta pointless to keep going around in circles.

To be fair, all of the schools ranked around 100 are pretty equally bad and $150 from any of the schools 15-20 is pretty scary. Maybe UT if you are from Texas would be ok to some or UCLA/USC if from SoCal.

JoJanel
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby JoJanel » Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:25 am

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Last edited by JoJanel on Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

JoJanel
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby JoJanel » Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:03 am

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Last edited by JoJanel on Sat Mar 16, 2013 12:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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cahwc12
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby cahwc12 » Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:08 am

JoJanel wrote:Apologies if my previous post was misinterpreted. I'm looking for "vague" responses that will help me compare the relative value of school ranking. If it helps you, feel free to choose your favorite local T20/T100 pairing. You are also welcome to not participate in this particular thread. Thanks again to those of you with constructive comments and questions.


Do you really think the school you're applying to is going to be able to out you because you name the school as an anonymous poster on an internet message board? You haven't given any personal information about yourself. Just say what the schools are.

edit: so I just looked up your access time, and I'm going to assume you're west coast, and not in california, which leaves you with:

UWash vs Gonzaga.

I'd go to Gonzaga for free.

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UtilityMonster
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Re: Scholarships vs. Rankings

Postby UtilityMonster » Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:07 pm

This question depends on which top 20 school we are talking about. #20? - B




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